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Federal insurance program doesn't cover 'loss of use'

But some private policies cover expenses for living somewhere else
Posted at 6:00 PM, Oct 30, 2023
and last updated 2023-10-30 18:02:03-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — As more Floridians turn to flood insurance coverage, some are also being surprised about what is covered.

Jon in Sebastian emailed us when he discovered something about his federal flood policy.

"I found that is doesn’t cover 'loss of use' of the home if there is a flood," he wrote.

That means no covered expenses for living somewhere else if the flood damage is too severe.

Robert Norberg of Arden Insurance in Lantana said that is standard for federal flood policies.

Robert Norberg, Arden Insurance
Robert Norberg speaks about rising home insurance rates in Florida.

"They pay to basic, but they will not pay for that additional amount that can be thousands and thousands of dollars while you’re being rebuilt," he said.

Jon in Sebastian told us that represents "a huge burden" on policyholders.

Norberg said federal flood polices also have a limit of $250,000 on a repairs from flooding.

Homeowners looking for better protection may need to look at private policies as more insurers are now offering the flood coverage.

"Some of it is slightly more expensive, some of it is even cheaper,"Norberg said.

"They offer the additional living expenses, more of the bells and whistles, they offer replacement costs on personal property," Norberg said.